Four things Klopp got wrong as Liverpool lose Champions League to Real Madrid

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Despite dominating for long periods, Liverpool failed to win their second Champions League trophy in three years after falling to a 1-0 defeat to Real Madrid.

A nervy first-half saw a Karim Benzema goal disallowed, with the Reds having dominated the opening 45 minutes. But after the break, Liverpool struggled to match their first-half levels and a dreadful defensive lapse from Trent Alexander-Arnold saw Vinicius open the scoring for Madrid on the hour mark.

Despite the Reds pushing for an equaliser, they found Thibaut Courtois in inspired form, with Carlo Ancelotti's side able to hold on to claim their 14th European Cup. Here, Daily Star Sport looks at four things Klopp got wrong as his side lost out on a third trophy of the season.

Trusting Trent

Ahead of the game much of the focus was one the match-up between Vinicius and Trent Alexander-Arnold. The winger had been one of the driving forces behind Madrid's run to the final, with his pace creating problems for many of their opponents.

Alexander-Arnold has come under pressure for his defensive efforts in the past and it was that aspect of his game which cost the Reds at the Stade de France. Ibrahima Konate was forced to rescue his fullback several times in the opening 45 minutes as Alexander-Arnold let Vinicius roam free.

That strategy proved costly in the second period, with the Englishman at fault for Vinicius' opening goal. Alexander-Arnold failed to pick up the Brazilian's run at the back post, allowing him a simple tap-in to put Madrid in front.

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Failing to take advantage of dominance

Liverpool were utterly dominant in the first-half, enjoying much of the ball and creating chance after chance. Only relatively few really troubled Thibaut Courtois though, despite the Reds opening Madrid up time and time again.

Their failure to convert their chances proved incredibly costly, with Madrid taking the lead just before the hour mark. In total, the Reds had 24 shots on the Madrid goal, but failed to see any hit the back of the net.

Tempo dropping

Liverpool clearly attempted to keep the the game's tempo as high as possible in order to disrupt Madrid's build up play. Even Jordan Henderson was seen pushing on to put Thibaut Courtois under pressure when the Los Blancos keeper was passed the ball.

The strategy worked perfectly to keep Liverpool in control, with Madrid struggling to break out of their own half for much of the opening 45 minutes. But in the second-half, the Reds appeared to drop off from their high-tempo approach.

They began to sit back from the Madrid defence, and even when they had the ball, there were few forward runs. After falling behind, Liverpool continued to struggle to raise their tempo back to the levels of the first period, playing into Madrid's hands.

Fullbacks failing in attack

Much of Liverpool's attacking play is built around their fullbacks pushing forward and putting balls into the box. But against Madrid, both Alexander-Arnold and Andy Robertson struggled badly to contribute going forwards.

Their crossing was particularly poor, with Robertson failing with his first five attempts to put the ball in and Alexander-Arnold having a cross success rate of just 50 per cent. Their corners also failed to trouble Madrid's defence, with many hitting the first man.

  • Liverpool FC
  • Jurgen Klopp
  • Real Madrid FC
  • Champions League

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